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Today In Senate Plenary PROCEEDINGS OF THE NIGERIAN SENATE OF WEDNESDAY, 13TH MARCH, 2019-nassnewsng.com

Today In Senate Plenary PROCEEDINGS OF THE NIGERIAN SENATE OF WEDNESDAY, 13TH MARCH, 2019.
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PROCEEDINGS OF THE NIGERIAN SENATE OF WEDNESDAY,13TH MARCH 2019, Compiled by Southwest First Alert Newspaper.

Welcome to a new Legislative Day in the Senate of the Federal Republic of Nigeria!

‪Senate President, Dr. Abubakar Bukola Saraki led the Principal Officers into the chambers; took the official prayers; and began the day’s proceedings at 11:22am.
‪Senator Barnabas Gemade moved for the approval of votes and proceedings of Tuesday, 12th March, 2019. Senator Ben Murray Bruce seconded.‬

OATH
Newly elected Senator representing Kogi East, Isaac Alfa took the oath of office.

PETITIONS
Senator Bassey Akpan raised a petition on behalf of his constituency on the unwanted arrest of Akwa Ibom people and the killings of the people of the state.

Senator Philip Aduda raised a petition on the blockage of various entries into Abuja by the Nigerian Army.

Senate President, Dr. Abubakar Bukola Saraki referred the petitions to the Committee on Ethics, Privileges and Public Petitions to report in two weeks.

PRESENTATION OF BILLS- First Reading
1. Environmental Impact Assessment Act (repeal and re-enactment) Bill, 2019 (SB. 723) by Senator Ahmad Lawan.

Environmental Impact Assessment Act (repeal and re-enactment) Bill, 2019 (SB. 723) was read the First Time.

2. Nigerian Food Safely Bill, 2019 (SB. 724) by Senator Ahmad Lawan.

Nigerian Food Safely Bill, 2019 (SB. 724) was read the First Time.

EXECUTIVE COMMUNICATION
Senate President, Dr. Abubakar Bukola Saraki read a letter from Mr. President on his Decision to Decline Assent to the National Oil Spill Detection and Response Agency, (Amendment) Bill 2018.

Senate President, Dr. Abubakar Bukola Saraki read a letter from Mr. President on his request for the Confirmation of the Appointment of Chairman and Commissioners for the Revenue Mobilisation, Allocation and Fiscal Commission in Accordance With the Provision of Section 154:1 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 (as Amended)

Executive Communication by Senate Leader.
-That the Senate do consider the report of Mr. President C-in-C on the 2019-2021 Medium Term Expenditure Framework (MTEF) and Fiscal Strategy Paper (FSP) in accordance with the Fiscal Responsibility Act 2007.

‪Minority Leader seconded that the Senate do consider the report of Mr. President C-in-C on the 2019-2021 Medium Term Expenditure Framework (MTEF) and Fiscal Strategy Paper (FSP) in accordance with the Fiscal Responsibility Act 2007.‬

‪Senate President, Dr. Abubakar Bukola Saraki referred the Executive Communication to the Committee on Finance to report by Wednesday next week.‬

CONSIDERATION OF A BILL- Second Reading
1. A Bill for an Act to authorize the issue from the Consolidated Revenue Fund of the Federation the total sum of N8,826,636,578,915 (Eight Trillion, Eight Hundred and Twenty-Six Billion, Six Hundred and Thirty-Six Million, Five Hundred and Seventy-Eight Thousand, Nine Hundred and Fifteen Naira) only, of which N492,360,342,965 (Four Hundred and Ninety-Two Billion, Three Hundred and Sixty Million, Three Hundred and Forty-Two Thousand, Nine Hundred and Sixty-Five Naira) only, is for Statutory Transfers, N2,264,014,113,092 (Two Trillion, Twi Hundred and Sixty-Four Billion, Fourteen Million, One Hundred and Thirteen Thousand, Ninety-Two Naira) only, is for Debt Service, N4,038,557,664,767 (Four Trillion, Thirty-Eight Billion, Five Hundred and Fifty-Seven Million, Six Hundred and Sixty-Four Thousand, Seven Hundred and Sixty-Seven Naira) only, is for Recurrent (Non-Debt) Expenditure while the sum of N2,031,754,458,902 (Two Trillion, Thirty-One Billion, Seven Hundred and Fifty-Four Million, Four Hundred and Fifty-Eight Thousand, Nine Hundred and Two Naira) only, is for contribution to the Development Fund for Capital Expenditure for the year ending on the 31st day of December, 2019 by Senate Leader.

‪“I will like to address the issue of our debt profile. It is important to address our infrastructural needs in the nation, but I believe there are other ways to fund this asides debt.”-Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu.‬

“Another issue is that the Executive usually presents the Budget late in the year, giving the National Assembly little time to deliberate on the budget, thereby leaving very little time for implementation. It is important that we discipline ourselves and correct this in the future.”- ‪Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu.‬

‪“The purpose of the budget is to promote inclusiveness and diversify the economy; To also build our economy and make it globally competitive. I am sure that the Government has put measures in place to ensure that the targets in this budget are met.”-Senator Barau Jibrin.‬

‪“We will recall that over the years, implementation has been our issue for our Budget. But now it seems that there are some realistic ideas in this Budget that will make for effective implementation.”- Senator Andrew Uchendu.‬

“Time is not on our side. Nigerians are anxious and the Executive is waiting to implement. I am appealing that we try our best to pass the Budget before the end of this month; let us set that target so that anything else comes up as a supplementary budget or an amendment to the already passed budget.”-Senator Ali Ndume.

“Let us take into account that the election took most of our time and went into the time set for the proposal of this Budget. I also want to suggest that It may be necessary for the National Assembly to set a date to critically look at the funding of Agriculture in the nation as opposed to other sectors. Providing food for the nation is critical and very important to any country.”-Senator Bala Na’allah.

“I agree in totality on the need for the expeditious passage of this budget.”-Senator Bassey Akpan.

‪“Funding is an area that affects implementation the most and is usually greatly ignored. Going forward in 2019, the Government should pay more attention to revenue and ensure that leakages are blocked.”- ‬Senator Barnabas Gemade.

“The issue of petroleum subsidy should also be addressed. Every Government that comes into power speaks of abolishing subsidy but does nothing about it for fear of not being re-elected and this has to stop. There should be a removal of the subsidy completely.”- Senator Barnabas Gemade.

“Manufacturing of products within the country should be promoted as this is sure to create more jobs. It is also important that if we must move forward as a people, there should be no incentive given to criminals.”-Senator Barnabas Gemade.

‪“We need to look into promoting agriculture in the nation. Asides budgetary allocation. We should look into ways where programmes can be created to fund this sector. We need to stop importing products we already have.”- Senator Adamu Aliero.‬

“I also don’t believe we are borrowing so much as a nation. Our GDP is good enough to sustain this borrowing, so I don’t believe it is a problem.”- Senator Adamu Aliero.

‪“We have to look at the state of our economy vis-a-vis the allocations in the budget. There is a drop in the revenue of the Nigerian customs and there are barely any foreign investments.”- Senator Dino Melaye.‬

“In the midst of the outrageous calamity in this nation, how do we fund the 2019 budget? Should we borrow again or fund it from daily contributions?”- Senator Dino Melaye.

‪“We have seen the progressive deterioration of facilities in Nigerian prisons, hospitals, schools and other institutions. There is need for funding in these areas.”- Senator Shehu Sani.‬

“The new universities and polytechnics we approved should also be funded. Mining has not been invested into in the nation and that should be looked into.”- Senator Shehu Sani.

‪“I noticed that in the budget, there is no desire by the Federal Government to promote tourism in the nation. This can be a very important area of our economy. “- Senator @FatimatRasaki ‬

“I feel that there is a need to make the Ministry of Tourism an independent Ministry from Culture. This will promote effectiveness in the tourism sector.”- Senator Fatimat Raji Rasaki.

“We will continue the #2019Budget debate on another Legislative day.”- Senate President, Dr. Abubakar Bukola Saraki.

ADJOURNMENT
‪Senate Leader, Ahmad Lawan announces that plenary be adjourned to Tuesday, 19th March, 2019 to enable Senators and House of Representatives members-elect receive their certificates of return tomorrow 14th March, 2019.‬

Senate Leader moved that all items on the order paper be stood down to another legislative day. Minority Leader seconded.

Plenary is adjourned to Tuesday, 19th March, 2019






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